| Fundraising Near and Far!
Shore Service Dogs conducts many different fundraisers throughout the year to help offset the costs of the Service Dogs they provide. Locally we have done such events and campaigns as bakesales, Stars of Hope for Heroes trees, a Barktoberfest, donation bottles, car washes, and basket bingos,to name just a few.
Josh & Maj at Barktoberfest at the Salisbury Fuddruckers
We are constantly looking for new ideas of how to vitally needed funding to assist these dogs in becoming canines that can lend a paw. Your help in your community can make such a huge difference. Won't you please aid us in our goal to assist those who need these dogs the most?
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Fundraising Ideas and How-To(s)
You don't have to be near SSD to be able to help train these incredible puppers. By conducting a fundraiser in your own town you can assist these wonderful dogs to become the legs and hands of a person in need! How you can help is very simple.
1) Think of ideas, large and small (ie: bake sales, car washes, galas, basket bingos, golf tournaments, proceed donation dog groomings, restaurant events, etc.) that would raise funds. Here is a link to an interesting organization that posts a pretty good list of fundraising ideas.
Obviously there are many different types of great fundraising events but that will at least give you an idea of things that have worked for others.
2) Write up a description of each idea and send it to us in an email...
- who would do it
(you, your civic/community/religious organization, your school, etc.)
- what is the basic concept
Below is an example that you can copy and paste to customize for your event ideas. It will aid you in keeping straight all those little details that sometimes get lost in the excitement of the event.
My daughter’s class will hold a bake sale at school one day each week where brownies will be sold for $0.75 each. All the brownies will be made and donated by the parents. The kids will organize and run the bakesale themselves with an adult supervising, helping them learn how to plan and run a succesful sale, and taking care of being the cashier. The teacher of the class will incorporate the experiences into their class curriculum and will give extra credit to those who succesfully reach a *NUMBER REFLECTING A CHALLENGING FEAT INSERTED HERE* target sales goal. I will solicit a local business for a *COOL ITEM INSERTED HERE* donation to be given as a prize for the kid with the highest sales. The kids will raise $30.
- where would it be held
- when would it be held
- how long would the fundraiser run
- would it be a one time/annual/continuous event
- how many people would it involve to run it
- how much time would it require to plan
- what all's needed
- does it require upfront funding and where would you get that money for those costs
- who would you solicit donations of items/services/money from to run the event
(Realize that many businesses need a written description of the asked for donation at least a couple of months before the item/services/money is needed. Many times it has to be sent on up the corporate ladder to get approval and that takes time. Plan for that needed buffer when deciding the date of the event)
- who would you contact to promote it
- how would you promote it (ie banners, tv/radio, newspapers, etc.)
- who's your target market
- how many people do you estimate will attend/donate
- how much money do you estimate the event could raise
(The more information you send to us the better idea we have of how we can help you make it a success!)
Send the outlined idea by email to us. If the event is something fitting our guidelines, we'll create artwork for you to print out flyers and such to help you promote the event.
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3) Once the we've coordinated the event, begin to gather your volunteers and start the ball rolling to make your event happen. Depending on how complex the thing is, it might be really easy and doable by yourself or may be something that requires quite a few people and quite a lot of planning to successfully pull off. If it needs people and planning, your local community/civic/religious organizations might be able to give you guidance or possibly even help out with the event. Just make sure you plan as much as you can for all contingencies ahead of time so that you don't have to scramble to do crisis management at the last minute or during the event. While you obviously won't be able to plan for everything, the phrase "an ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure" does have a lot of merit to it!
4) You then start promoting the event in your community (if your target market is local) or start spreading the word if your target market is a larger audience. Good community promotion sources are online & local tv community calendars, radio/tv public service announcements, live radio/tv publicity of the event, newspapers, etc. We've even used a Scooby Doo dog costume with a volunteer waving out by the highway to draw in people to our Barktoberfest. Use your imagination. Ultimately, the more of your taget market that knows about the event, the greater success it wil be. Realize that some forms of publicity need to be submitted 2 weeks or more ahead of when it's to be held. Plan for that needed buffer when deciding the date of the event.
5) Run the event. MAKE SURE TO TAKE LOTS OF PHOTOS TO SEND TO US SO WE CAN POST IT ON OUR WEBSITE!!!!!! (a burned CD of digitals are best but we can scan old fashioned photos too). We want to recognize all our hardworking volunteers for their efforts to help place a Service Dog. A picture is definitely worth a thousand words and we want as many pictures as you can get!
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6) Write up a brief summary of how the event went and include copies of any local written media promotion/coverage it got that you think would work well on the website. If there are any links to websites that involved the event, please include their addresses. Also, please make sure to let us know who all was involved with the event and whether they want their full name/first name only/picture posted or not on the website. We realize that some people want to remain annonymous and let their good deeds speak for themselves but if we have their permission, we certainly would like to publicly acknowledge them for all their help!
7) Within no later than 2 weeks of the end of the event (that way we can make sure the event is posted to the web soon after it happened) mail out the results packet. This will include a cashier's or bank check made out to Shore Service Dogs, Inc. for the amount raised and the summary and photos taken for the event. MAKE SURE TO HAVE PROMOTIONAL PHOTOS TAKEN OF SOMEONE FROM THE EVENT HOLDING THE CHECK!! If you can make it into a media event, please do so. Every bit of publicity you get before, during, and after helps the event (especially if it'll be an annual thing) and also it gets the word out about Shore Service Dogs! Definitely see if your local paper will print a blurb about the fundraiser with the check presentation photo. Mail the check and summary package to:
Shore Service Dogs, Inc.
PO Box 2251
Salisbury, MD 21802-2251
8) Once we've received your package, we'll send back a certificate of Thank You from SSD so that you can proudly display how your efforts helped sponsor the training of a Service Dog to assist a disabled person in need. We will also give you an estimated time of when we'll post the information about your event on our website. Once we've posted it, we'll send you an email letting you know that it's available to view. Make sure to promote that also so that everyone who was involved (both the people who ran it and those who donated/attended) can see all the good their hard work achieved!!